The Find Your Active small grants applications have reopened today.
The pivotal funding partnership between Active Essex and London Marathon Foundation continues following the Ford RideLondon-Essex 2023 event. Last year’s funding partnership saw over 200 fantastic initiatives, sessions and programmes supported through the Find Your Active small grants programme, helping to inspire activity. £1.75 million has now been injected into the county, since the partnership began in 2022.
As part of Active Essex’s Find Your Active brand, they are calling out to organisations, groups and instructors who will be able to apply for funds of up to £3,000, via the Active Essex website. The funding has been tailored in order to build upon the Essex Find Your Active campaign and vision to create an active Essex to support everyone’s physical and mental wellbeing, utilise active travel methods through walking and cycling, and focus on reaching hyper local communities, children, young people and marginalised groups.
Previous successful applications include the Colchester Mercury Theatre, FlexFit with Becky and Dennis and Dyer Boxing Academy. Utilising the funding, the Mercury Theatre offered older residents who have been impacted by social isolation and the cost-of-living crisis a chance to improve their physical and mental wellbeing through free Zumba sessions. Contrastingly Gill Bauer developed programmes through referral pathways to support residents’ mental wellbeing, as well as Menocize classes which uses movement to combat symptoms of perimenopause and the menopause. Active Essex hope that another wave of this funding will help create and develop further exciting activity opportunities for residents.
A project which utilised the funding last year, and supported young people through the small grants programme, is the Dennis and Dyer Boxing Academy in Epping. Positioned along this year’s Ford RideLondon-Essex route, Founder Mark Dennis added: “The funding has allowed us to get more kids engaged with boxing, more kids off consoles, and we’ve seen a rapid amount of interest in these new sessions. Boxing is like the best kept secret that it’s great for you mentally and physically, and it gives participants an amazing amount of confidence.”
Catherine Anderson, Executive Director at The London Marathon Foundation, said: “Our mission is to Inspire Activity so that everyone, regardless of age, ability or background can lead an active and healthy life, and the Find Your Active small grants programme helps us to do just that.
“Thanks to Ford RideLondon, last year, more than 200 Find Your Active small grants were awarded across Essex, and we look forward to building on this over the coming year so that many more residents can get active in the way that’s right for them.”
The Ford RideLondon-Essex cycling event, which took place for the 2nd year running in May 2023, in conjunction with Essex County Council, has led to the continuation of this partnership between Active Essex and LMF. Active Essex is the Active Partnership for the county and hosted by Essex County Council, and LMF is the parent charity of London Marathon Events (LME), the organisers of RideLondon.
Further opportunities will also be made available to the physical activity and sport sector in Essex, utilising this funding from the London Marathon Foundation, which will be announced later this summer.
To read the criteria and to apply to the Find Your Active grant, click here.